For quite some time now, scientists and experts across the globe have been trying to warn us about the dangers of global warming and climate change. With ice caps melting, sea levels rising, and extreme weather conditions becoming more frequent, human life as we know it could be at serious risk if we don’t start making serious changes to the way we live.
Unfortunately, too many people don’t believe the facts, and even more are simply unable to make a change. Less developed countries still rely on fossil fuels for industry, and most people don’t have the money to switch to electric cars or install solar panels.
As a result, this planet is becoming inhabitable for its wildlife.
One of the most prominent examples of a species being affected by climate change is polar bears: a creature that relies on the cold conditions of the arctic circle to survive. As a result of global warming, however, the magnificent beasts are no longer able to hunt, and therefore end up starving to death.
In a video posted by National Geographic, a lone polar bear can be seen staggering through a snowless wilderness. There is no prey around for it to hunt and, even if there were, it is unlikely that the animal would have enough strength left to capture it.
Photographer Paul Nicklen, who witnessed the bear’s suffering, told National Geographic: «We stood there crying – filming with tears rolling down our cheeks.»
He explains that he and the team considered intervening and feeding the poor creature, but realized that this would only prolong its suffering. Moreover, it’s actually illegal to feed the polar bears in Canada, which is where this footage was recorded.
Despite the heartbreaking nature of the video, Nicklen believed it needed to be shared with the world so that this bear’s struggle would not have been in vain.
«When scientists say bears are going extinct, I want people to realize what it looks like,» Nicklen said. «Bears are going to starve to death. This is what a starving bear looks like.»
The photographer posted the clip on Facebook, noting in the caption:»It’s a soul-crushing scene that still haunts me, but I know we need to share both the beautiful and the heartbreaking if we are going to break down the walls of apathy. This is what starvation looks like. The muscles atrophy. No energy. It’s a slow, painful death.»
He went on:
«People think that we can put platforms in the ocean or we can feed the odd starving bear. The simple truth is this – if the Earth continues to warm, we will lose bears and entire polar ecosystems. This large male bear was not old, and he certainly died within hours or days of this moment. But there are solutions. We must reduce our carbon footprint, eat the right food, stop cutting down our forests, and begin putting the Earth – our home – first.»
«When scientists say bears are going extinct, I want people to realize what it looks like,» says photographer Paul Nicklen pic.twitter.com/foBaqXqOQ4
— National Geographic (@NatGeo) 9 декабря 2017 г.
At this point, it is frankly unbelievable that some individuals choose to deny climate change — especially considering that whole towns and families have been torn apart by various freak storms and floodings and wildfires in just the past few months.
Hopefully, the footage of this poor bear will be enough to convince people that more needs to be done to save our planet — if not for the animals that are already suffering, but for the human beings that will suffer in the future if we don’t act now.